Hepatitis A

By: Lauren Hurley

Symptoms

Symptoms may include, pain in the abdomen, joints, and muscles, fatigue, loss of appetite, fever, diarrhea, vomiting, nausea, dark urine, itching, yellow skin and eyes, and weight loss. Usually the virus does not cause long term problems or complications, but in rare cases some people may have liver failure and need a transplant.
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Causes

Hepatitis A is caused when a person eats food contaminated by someone with virus, drinks contaminated water, or eating raw shellfish from water polluted sewage. You can also get infected if you: Eat fruits, vegetables, or other foods that were contaminated during handling, like eating raw shellfish harvested from water that's got the virus in it.


Treatment

There is no treatment that can cure Hepatitis A, but the condition clears up on its own in one or two months. Resting and adequate hydration can help. Also try to avoid alcohol.

Prevention

There is a two dose vaccine that can prevent a person from getting this virus. The first is the initial shot, and then a booster shot 6 months late. The best time to get the vaccine is between the age of 6 months and 2 years.

Immune Cells involved in Immune Response

The immune cells have trouble attacking the virus because it mutates once it is in the body, making it hard to fight, but not impossible.

How Virus Replicates

After the virus is in the host cell, the virus loses the capsid and the RNA makes the host cell to produce the viral proteins and RNA that the virus needs to be made. A protease to make proteins and a polymerase that helps make viral RNA are made when these viral proteins are made. These become enclosed in a protein shell to make new viruses.

Photomicrograph of the Virus

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